Fu Manchu with his mustache.
The Fu Manchu mustache takes its name from a fictional Chinese villain of the same name. It has come to symbolize the villain in cartoons and drawings with Chinese characters. However, this style of mustache has become popular all around the world, especially with bikers and other groups with a sinister reputation.
Characteristics of the Fu Manchu Mustache
This mustache resembles the more traditional biker mustache style. However, there is one major difference. The biker mustache is shaped from whiskers on the cheek and chin while the Fu Manchu is grown entirely from the upper lip. It is not attached to the face at any other point.
Chow Yun-Fat (Captain Sao Feng Fu) sporting a Fu Manchu Mustache in the movie Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End.
The hair on the lip is kept trimmed relatively short except at the ends. The ends are allowed to grow out long and trained to hang straight down. Mustache wax is an important tool in grooming this style. The hair is pulled down into the shape desired. It is then waxed and pulled into a point. It is common for the hair to hang down to the chin or below.
How to Grow A Fu Manchu
However, this takes time to achieve a Fu Manchu as the hair only grows at a rate of about one half inch per month. During the growth period, it is important to groom the mustache at least twice a week to ensure that only the hair on the ends is allowed to grow. The rest of the face should be shaved at least every other day.
Use of a trimmer is recommended to shape the mustache and keep the rest of it from growing long and bushy. The Fu Manchu is a thinner mustache type and should be groomed so that it looks right. It is important to keep the beard hair shaved off so that the mustache ends hang straight down naturally without being connected to the rest of the face.
Some men prefer to allow the beard hair to grow down the sides of the chin and shape the look while the lip hair is growing out. This is usually acceptable, but one should be aware that this is not a true Fu Manchu until the mustache is long enough to hang down properly without the augmentation of the beard hair.
This look is not appropriate for everyone. Fortunately, understanding the definition of a Fu Manchu & how to grow it shows that one always has the option to shave it off and begin again with a different style if it starts to look wrong or undesirable. In many cases, this can be as simple as taking a pair of scissors and cutting off the longer hair at the end of the mustache so that it is even with the rest.
While this style has become stereotypical of Chinese villains, many men have worn it who were far from villainous.